Voltage level translator provides direction-free flexibility for networks and servers

10-06-2019 | Diodes Inc | Power

Diodes Incorporated offers a new addition to its line of low voltage level translators, providing simple and autonomous bidirectional operation. The PI4GTL2002 is a 2-bit level shifter created to translate signals conditioned for one voltage level to signals at a higher or lower voltage, such as GTL or GTL+ to LVTTL/TTL. As processor manufacturers progress to include GTL+ interfaces in their devices, the demand for high-performance level translators is growing in applications such as server/data centres and networking. The device satisfies that demand with the further benefit of not imposing the necessity for directional control.

The open-drain design of the device means the product can translate voltage levels in either direction with no incurring design complexity or performance penalty of a dedicated direction control signal. The device runs in either direction, shifting between 0.8V and 5V (CMOS), with less than 1.5ns propagation delay between inputs and outputs. Therefore, the device can support several use cases, which includes standard and fast mode I2C.

The NMOS-based pass transistors in the solution utilise a common gate to allow bidirectional operation, with reference voltages for all of the two signals. This allows the design team to implement a different voltage to either side of the device, enabling voltage translation between signals ranging from 0.8V to 5V.

The pin-out of the device follows a convenient flow-through design, creating a simpler PCB layout. A low input and output capacitance keeps the propagation delay low, while the device also highlights an on-resistance of just 3.5Ohm to minimise signal distortion.

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